Watchdog Journalism in South America: News, Accountability, and Democracy

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Columbia University Press, 2000 - History - 282 pages
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Since the 1980s, investigative journalism has undergone startling development in South America, where repressive regimes have long relegated such reporting to marginal publications or underground outlets. Watchdog Journalism in South America explores the rise of critical journalism in four countries: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Peru. Drawing upon interviews with journalists and editors and analyzing selected news stories from each country, Silvio Waisbord offers a unique look at the significant differences between critical reporting in developing democracies and that already in place in the United States and European democracies.

As Waisbord demonstrates, critical reporting in South America can be better understood as watchdog journalism than as investigative reporting as understood in the tradition of Anglo-American journalism. Examining the historical absence of a muckraking press, he argues that watchdog journalism represents new political and media dynamics and discusses the emergence of a new journalistic culture and its contributions to the quality of democracy and public debates about morality, truth, and accountability.

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References to this book

Media and Power
James Curran
No preview available - 2002
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About the author (2000)

Régis Debray is professor of philosophy in the Faculté de Lettres at the Université de Lyon III. Founder and editor of Les Cahiers de médiologie, former aide to president François Mitterand, erstwhile associate of Che Guevara, and captive cause célèbre in Bolivia (1967--1970), he is the author of numerous books, including Media Manifestos: On the Technological Transmission of Cultural Forms; Charles de Gaulle: Futurist of the Nation; Against Venice; Revolution in the Revolution?; and Teachers, Writers, Celebrities: The Intellectuals of Modern France. His political memoir, Blessed Be Our Gods, is forthcoming.

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